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Valonia- centre for sustainable development in the Southwest Finland


Detailed description of the Good Practice

The new organisation, Valonia, was established in spring 2008. The starting point for the development work has been to improve the existing organisations, not to create something totally new. Ten years of experience both in the energy office and in the Local adenda 21 office has taught a lot about managing sustainable development in the region, and this know-how is greatly appreciated both within the offices´employees and among networks members. Also, the offices have managed to establish very good relations with a variety of actors and well-designed practices, and by improving the existing organizations it is possible to maintain these valuable relationships and practices.The aim was to create a kind of “umbrella organization” that would – in the beginning – include the organization of Agenda 21 for Southwest Finland, the Energy Agency of Southwest Finland, and “Haavi” –association (promotes environmental education and raising environmental awareness). The main idea of the new organisation is to collect together different units, agencies, organisations and companies that all deal with different aspects of sustainable development and locate them into a same place.

In the Centre for Sustainable Development in Southwest Finland different units have their own areas of responsibility but they still work in very close collaboration, which again decreases the amount of overlapping work that they are now facing.

The newly established (2008) Valonia - Centre for sustainable development in Southwest Finland is a good example of reorganising or further developing the city or municipal administration in terms of sustainable development. The fields of work in the organisations included the local agenda 21 work, environmental education and energy issues.

Objectives of the Good Practice

The aim of the new organisation is to promote sustainable development on the region of Southwest Finland. The aim of the new organisation is to e.g. offer more versatile services in the field of sustainable development, deeper integration with other actors, marketing the office more as providing “high-level professional services” in the firlds of 1.) Water protection 2.) Environmental education 3.) Raising environmental awareness and 4.) Combating climate change.

Participants of the Good Practice

The new organisation was formed from already existing offices: the LA 21 office that was the coordinative and informative core of the network Agenda 21 for Southwest Finland. The organization of the Agenda 21 for Southwest Finland is a voluntary co-operation network of altogether 28 municipalities in the region.The other two key actors are the Energy Agency of Southwest Finland, and the “Haavi” –association, promoting environmental education and raising environmental awareness.

Target group of the Good Practice

The new centre provides services and expertise on sustainable development for municpalities, enterprises and for the citizens in the fields of energy, waste water (in unscattered settlements), environmental education, sustainable transportation and sustainable consumption and green procurement.

More Details of the Good Practice

Documentation and documents


Available files

Contact details

Vanha Suurtori 7
20500 Turku
Puh: (02) 262 3176 (Anne Ahtiainen)
Fax: (02) 262 3450

Data sources and references

www.sustainment-project.net -> Outputs: "Managing sustainability - an organisational plan for city of Turku. Also online in toolkit URBANworks www.urbanworks.toolkit.eu